• Welcome to the ShrimperZone forums.
    You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which only gives you limited access.

    Existing Users:.
    Please log-in using your existing username and password. If you have any problems, please see below.

    New Users:
    Join our free community now and gain access to post topics, communicate privately with other members, respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and free. Click here to join.

    Fans from other clubs
    We welcome and appreciate supporters from other clubs who wish to engage in sensible discussion. Please feel free to join as above but understand that this is a moderated site and those who cannot play nicely will be quickly removed.

    Assistance Required
    For help with the registration process or accessing your account, please send a note using the Contact us link in the footer, please include your account name. We can then provide you with a new password and verification to get you on the site.

Matt the Shrimp

aka Harry Potter
Joined
Oct 27, 2003
Messages
19,929
Location
Lewisham, London
Folks,

As I'm not quite sure what time I'll get back tonight in order to post this on the front page, it is not fair to deny fbm his readership - or to deny you his pearls of wisdom - so here is the fbm report for the Millwall game, which will hopefully go up on the front page tonight.

* * * * *

SUBDUED SHRIMPERS MAULED BY LIONS

Southend blew a golden chance to close in on the play off places tonight when they slipped to a 2-1 defeat at The New Den and allowed Millwall to escape the drop zone.

This report comes to you after a trip down the A13 in the fbm 7 seater chucklebus (in its last journey before being sold) and it was a shame not to conclude its journeys with a win. The trips the bus has made were discussed initially on the way up (in between beer breaks and a sandwich for one of our crew), when the 5 Millwall bound occupants made various references to away victories at Kidderminster, Birmingham and the Milstad, and on the way back all 7 travellers remembered other away victories at Charlton, Wycombe and Gillingham equally well.

I suppose it made up for the fact that Southend were so uninspired this evening that we had to resort to remembering better trips and resorting to trivia games relating to Southends history. One of our party had recently acquired a programme from the never to be forgotten FA Cup game against Liverpool in 1979 when 31000+ crammed into Roots Hall to witness a 0-0 draw in the snow. Such trivia questions were things like “What day did the game take place?” (it wasn’t the Saturday as shown on the programme), “Who made Southend’s kit in that year?”, “What was the physio’s name?” and “Who was the groundsman?”. I am pleased to report dear reader that yours truly showed his true colours and actually got all of those questions right, much to the amazement of the person asking them. Should have had money on it as he obviously didn’t know just how sad I was as a teenager.

Anyway, the rest of the journey back was punctuated by some simple discussion points, such as “Who was our worst player tonight?”, which prompted 3 different answers from the 7 (MacDonald, Gower and Revell) and then “Who was our best player tonight?” which was a whole lot harder than it’s predecessor.

Sorry... back to the game... well it was that riveting you see. Both sides had golden opportunities in the first 5 minutes (Millwalls probably better) and were fairly similar inasmuch as the ball was squared back to a striker a few yards out who, in both cases ballooned the ball over the bar. Southend’s only moment of quality in the entire game came after 9 minutes when a decent move led the the ball being half cleared to Bailey 25 yards out who caught the ball sweetly on the volley to put Blues 1-0 up. For the rest of the half Southend looked untroubled and Millwall looked a relegation side, and the infamous home fans were reduced to silence.

However, that all changed after 40 minutes. An error by Mulgrew led to the ball going down the right and the cross was put out for a corner by Clarke. I mentioned to two of my mates that it would be an appalling time to concede now. Hey Presto! Southend’s achilles heel of defending set pieces again showed itself and Alexander had a free header that Flahavan could only push onto the post and then watch nestle in the onion bag.

Millwall must have been laughing their socks off as they really didn’t deserve to be in the game but at the interval at 1-1 they had every chance. Blues were slow out of the blocks again in the second half and looked poor all over the pitch. The home side worked harder, chased harder and pressed harder. We desperately missed Barnard and it was glaringly obvious that Revell and MacDonald do not work together. Neither of our strikers got into any positions to receive the ball or make any chances. We were so powder puff up front it was embarrassing.

After 53 minutes the inevitable happened. Clarke chased back and appeared to handle the ball in the penalty area but a free kick was given just outside the box. Martin struck it low, the wall jumped in unison and the ball simply went under the wall and past Flahavan.

Blues were pathetic now and the home fans were having the time of their lives. One of our party took great delight in yelling from the back of the stand something about them being a bunch of ******* and it was difficult to disagree. Whenever the ball went into the crowd (it didn’t matter what stand) the game of keeping the ball and throwing it around kept their tiny minds amused. I have never seen anything like that before and surely the FA should clamp down on those sorts of antics. I am sure Millwall the club are actually embarrassed by the behaviour of their followers.

Anyway, Southend simply didn’t look like scoring and a glance at the bench of Collis, Moussa, Grant, Hunt and Scannell provided very little that you could think might change the game. In any event, the totally ineffective MacDonald was replaced by Scannell whose pace at least may have given the defenders something to think about an Black went up front. Scannell’s involvement was limited however to just a few minutes and then he went in for what looked like a strong 50/50 challenge.

Certainly the opposition player didn’t complain or feign injury and much to everyone’s amazement the ref raced across and produced a straight red. The injustice of this seemed to wake Southend up (why did it take this sort of event to make the team play?) and for the last 10 minutes we were the better side. Moussa came on for Gower (he again looked out of sorts) but we were still unable to fashion a decent chance and I seem to recall the only goal attempt we had in the entire second half was a header from Clarke that Rhys Evans pushed to safety.

Having parked in a certain road in Bermondsey and then walked in (without knowing the geography of the ground) we then had to walk back through thousands on oncoming Millwall fans who took great delight in taunting us with some kids that looked as young as 6 singing “You’ll never make the station”. It makes me wonder what might have happened if we had won!

So the journey back in the fbm chucklebus wasn’t exactly the best ever but as I say, tales of yesteryear and trivia games lightened the mood until our arrival at The Harry just before closing time for a swift bevvy and a chance to see that we are still only one point off the play offs (if we win our game in hand) and there is still 1/3 of the season to go. I then dropped off all the passengers , the last one being in Beach Avenue – cheers lads, for this trip and all the previous chucklebus outings – and let’s remember that it’s not all doom and gloom yet but this was a VERY bad day at the office.

RATINGS –

Flahavan – 6.5 – Can’t remember him making a save yet we still conceded two goals and he insisted on kicking the ball towards Charlie Mac who was being marked by a 6’2” albino.

Francis – 7 – Probably one of the few to come out with much credit. Put over some decent crosses.
Mulgrew – 6.5 – Looks good on the ball but defends like David Morley used to. Another mistake led to a goal. He is going to be one of those players that makes one or two mistakes a game and will always get punished for it.
Clarke – 7.5 – MOM – Not as commanding as in previous matches but still made some superb challenges and blocks.
Barrett – 6.5 – Again, didn’t do much wrong really and worked hard.

Gower – 5 – Needs a rest. Sadly, the injury to Robson-Kanu and the suspension of Scannell means we’re stuck with him for at least another 3 matches.
McCormack – 6 – Seemed subdued and misplaced several passes. Almost anonymous in the second half.
Bailey – 7 – Contender for MOM and opened the scoring with a wonder strike but disappeared with McCormack in the second half and again kept giving the ball away.
Black – 5.5 – Was this the same player that took Hartlepool to pieces just 3 days before? I’m struggling to remember a decent contribution tonight.

MacDonald – 4 – Was he playing? Did absolutely nothing.
Revell – 5 – If he doesn’t score soon the crowd are going to get on his back and we’ll have another Matt Harrold.

SUBS –

Scannell – 6 – Only on for a few minutes before being harshly dismissed.
Moussa – 6 – I’ve just remembered that he had a golden chance near the end when Evans palmed the ball out to him. He was about 20 yards out but a lob towards the goal may have paid dividends. Instead he chose to slide the ball low and Evans gathered as if it were a back pass.
 
Top